The Real Paul Jones

Accept no substitutes

Corporate blogging with Tim Bray et al

Software engineers like to blog at leasr for now, Sun, Microsoft, IBM, 6 apart, amazon, google (internal) after buying blogger, infoworld, ebay, mozilla, yahoo. all represented. as well as external personal blogs.

microsoft has strong email list tradition and are less like to go to blog (scoble). Bray says same about Sun. wikis get great talk from everyone for project groups in particular. (sun, microsoft, google says greg stein). social text does groups not blogs says ross mayfield. shift logs are good for blogs (in disney and military). when does the honeymoon period end and people drop off.

bray says public blogs are in your face more than private email. sun went from 30 blogs to 700 on opening searching sucks says danyel fisher — except for google (greg stein agrees).

Blogs are of the moment and a public archive as opposed to email. nuggets more important that threads? if so discoverable blogs are great. importance of blogspheres gone on about. go lyceum!

policies? Sun policy: executive decision to free the masses. schwatrz (CEO) tells tim bray to lettem go til lawyers panic. will snow installed now the lawyers want a real policy which they need to have for SEC awareness, trademark, etc. and how do you handle stupid behavior.

start the blog and start the policy about the same time or blogs will be delayed or trouble will happen (the last if no policy, the first legal delays because lawyers don’t have blog experience and fear it too much). does say steve balmer have very different liabilities from a contract programmer — of course. how to make a policy then. Yahoo says PR is worse than lawyers. PR folks want to kill bloggers who break their message. Engineers want authority by speaking to the weaknesses as well as strengths.

tale of tivo vs media center at MSFT discussed. how do bosses accept networking outside the company. corporate loyalty vs craft loyality comes right back up.

MSFT does have an internal list that watches the blogs (neighborhood watch for blogs?). keeping your blog external allows you to move with the craft rather than be held in the knowledge management tar pit? or does encouraging the open environment create loyality? MSFT says yes they got a couple of guys from APPL because Apple did not let them blog or be public. person brand (read reputation) vs corporate brand (read some). Negotiate for the right to blog. Steve Gilmore does this.

Small company is told by their PR advisors to blog and so get their message and personalities out and to help build relationship.

career limiting moves

war stories

personal vs corporate (multiple blogs)

application areas

internal or external? (why does internal suck so badly)

best practices

1) let your management know what you are doing (IBM, Sun and MSFT advise.)
2) get your peers to document best practices (Ross Mayfield) MSFT and Sun do this
3) read before you right
4) be generous with your links
5) be soft to competitors (says Scoble of MSFT) not everyone agrees. “civility is the luxury of those in power.”
6) manage disagreement and work it out internally first. don’t blindside your collegues
7) email etc have the same problems so use the discussion to create policy
8) write what you know
9) comments or not? inconclusive

individual blogs often prefered over group or team blogs. some say team/group blogs are training wheels for individual blogs. tim bray says voice is the stuff!


  1. corporate blogging is mostly a fad. like “home pages” in the early days, it will be replaced by PR-approved marketing.

  2. I agree.

  3. As homepages were to pet rocks, blogs are to yamaguchi. So perhaps corporate blogs are… Aibo on a short leash?

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